Multicultural Education – Comparing Policies for Marginalized Groups in Canada and Israel

Wednesday, 23 October 2013
204 Runme Shaw Building, HKU Main Campus

Speaker: Ruwaida Abu Rass
Chair: Mark Bray


Canada’s multiculturalism policy, launched in 1971, has been widely admired. Among its effects have been major improvements in the education of Native Canadians. The policy could be an exemplary model for other pluralistic societies. Israel is among those societies, and arguably needs a similar policy for its native population and especially the Arab Bedouins in the southern part of the country.

This presentation will draw on two studies of newly-recruited teachers in the Northwest Territories of Canada and in the Negev of Israel. Both are remote areas with distinctive cultures; and both import teachers from other parts of the country to work alongside indigenous teachers. The seminar will highlight some of the achievements and tensions, and the lessons from the comparison.


Ruwaida Abu Rass is a teacher educator in the Academic Arab Institute for Education in Beit Berl Academic College, Israel. She also holds the UNESCO Chair for Multiculturalism in Teacher Training. She specializes in teaching English as a Foreign Language (EFL) and in multiculturalism in teacher edu- cation. She has been a member of the Second Authorities for Broadcasting in Israel, representing the Arab Palestinian minority.